Sunday, March 04, 2007

Sunday Meditation: Hurricane Blues

Observant Readers may have noticed that I've been featuring poetry links on occasional Sundays, in an attempt to broaden our horizons behind our usual fiction/nonfiction rotation. This week I want to call attention to a collection of Katrina/Rita related poetry entitled, Hurricane Blues. From the publisher's description,
Hurricane Blues is a unique artifact of American history: an anthology of original poems about the two most infamous hurricanes of 2005. Many of these poems are eyewitness accounts--written by both distinguished and emerging poets, all of whom were moved by the destruction of a legendary American city and the roughly 300-mile radius within Katrina's wrath.

This collection not only records history but serves in some way as a balm, a relief effort toward the inevitable reconstruction of the region. Accordingly, all proceeds from Hurricane Blues will go toward the relief effort.

Some snippets and reflections on the collection are available on this blog and from the Boston Globe,
Some "Hurricane Blues" poems remind us of the disconnect of being where sun warmed our faces as we listened to news about the rising waters. Virginia Ramus, watching, horrified, "from this New/Jersey beach," wrote of "ocean darkening/beneath fingernail/moon visible from all/over the nation." Likewise, Thomas R. Smith's poem, " In Wisconsin, Hardly a Breeze," asked "How would our/heart beat without the city that birthed Satchmo?"
Okay, so full disclosure: T.R. Smith is an old friend of my brother's. In the absence of a full poem from Hurricane Blues to share, try this excerpt from T.R.'s poem "Peace Vigil." I'm sure many of our Loyal Readers and Veteran Vigilers can find themselves in that circle.

For more Katrina related poetry, check out this Newshour feature from a few months back.
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